While progress in Africa can be seen across the board, every day-migrants are dying in the Mediterranean. The continent is in fact a powder keg. The powder is demographics. And the detonator is unemployment. What is worrying for the continent is even more dramatic for the Sahel, a huge region of about 100 million inhabitants, where insecurity is spreading and which may act as a detonator for West Africa with a population of 700 million in 25 years.
The mass unemployment of young people far more than jihadist propaganda, is the primary explanation for the dramatic collapse of Afghanistan. Despite major differences in geography and culture, there are huge similarities between the Sahel and Afghanistan, increasing insecurity, drug trafficking, and the spread of radical Islam being the most worrisome.
Unfortunately the same recipes that failed in Afghanistan are again being rolled out in the Sahel. Without a radical change in the international community's behaviour, we will soon be confronted with, first, a 'Sahelistan' and then an 'Africanistan,' an African Afghanistan, but five- or ten-times worse.